–Rubber Ducky Leaked–

The way media influences our behaviour and how we interpret what is shown

Posted on: June 27, 2012

 

When watching TV, reading a magazine, or even going to a film on a regular day in your life, what do you think? Or what do you learn? What are your opinions when we see something being advertised to you? What works when you’re about to go out shopping? Why is long hair in fashion today and the next day it’s not? The influence of media has become so powerful that it tells you the way to dress, look and how to act.

 

Changes in your behaviour are also formed by your upbringing, but when the pressure is there from the critical age, to look a certain way and dress a certain way ‘like they do in the movies’; this has become more than a trend. We are being controlled, especially in New Zealand. Why do you think there is no diversity? We eat the same food, look the same way, even our clothing options are limited in terms of the ‘look’ we go for. Why is this? It has been engrained in our brains that if you do not follow the trend that the media is presenting to you, then you are an outcast. Businesses also grow from this, using celebrities and other well-known idol-like people to show how great their product is. This is why we buy. We think these items are of good quality and celebrities who earn $10s of millions, wear the same things, or do the same things. What about your own opinion? Why shouldn’t you wear, look and do what you like? Do you feel the need to be accepted regularly by your peers?

 

Media preparers use celebrities to depict how ‘beauty’ is defined, and we feel compelled to look the same way ‘beautiful’. What is often not realised is that celebrities do get cosmetic surgery to look better than the norm. They also have the funds to splurge on hairstylists, makeup artists and amazing clothes that are one of a kind. They do this because that is what their career relies on. But this doesn’t mean that we should do the same. The media is a marketing tool, showing all the good sides and leaving out or showing minimal negatives.

 

These things alter our thinking patterns and control our actions. We seem to be hiding behind a mask, a facade. Food for thought:

 

Sometimes in life it’s hard to tell,
What we should or should not do,
Just because my friends do something,
Does that mean I should do it to?
I want so much to be accepted,
I want so bad to just fit in,
Should I join in and follow the crowd,
Although what they do might be a sin?

If I say no, will they laugh at me?
Or no longer be my friend?
Will they think that I’m a coward,
If I don’t go with the trend?

When they run the streets,
And smoke and drink,
And generally act a fool,
If they invite me to go,

And I say no,
Will they think that I’m uncool?

If someone hands a joint to me,
And says..”everyone’s doing it”,
Will I turn and leave like I know I should?
Or will I take a hit?

I’m under a lot of pressure,
To let loose and go with the flow,
It’s often easier to go along,
Than to stand and just say no…

 

Part of a poem by Calvin Hart instigates that peer-pressure not only results in negative behaviour, unwilling to be someone you’re not, but you do it so you won’t get left out. It shows that media influences larger groups to behave in the same way. This is then passed on through peer pressure. Altering a person’s thinking and actions by making them hide their true thoughts and behaviour, just so that person will fit in. What is the norm? ‘Normal’ doesn’t mean anything now. To be normal would mean to be yourself and not be influenced by the thinking patterns and behaviour of the majority. Isn’t that seen as abnormal though? Who is to say now? The reality is that the definition of these words have been changed so much to suit their own thinking. To be ‘normal’ is to fit in. Why would you want to fit in with something you don’t agree with? The pressure is on the rise and everything around will forever change the definition of such words in the dictionary. Today, it is the new trend to NOT wear makeup. Yesterday, wearing makeup was what made you beautiful. Tomorrow, they’ll probably say true beauty is for woman to never shave and for men to get breast implants. Who knows of what is to come?

 

Why does this happen? Are we scared to show who we are? Do you compare yourself constantly to others? Are you afraid of being shunned and called ‘abnormal’ (what does that even mean?). When did this even begin? And, more importantly, why are we so caught up about what others think?

 

Not fitting in affects our earning ability. It can be harder to get a job when people think you’re crazy. Your so called ‘credibility’ goes down, as well as our reputation. How about the friends we associate with? Your change of behaviour will also affect your friends circle. It’s all a spiralling effect that takes place and affects your entire life: mood, dress sense, lifestyle, and people we associate, and so on.

 

Overall, the media is training brains in a tactical way that unifies characteristics and behaviour of people in the world.

 

Do you have an opinion? Or shall I just ask the person next to you?

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